Woman getting chemical peel

Chemical peels have been a leading skincare treatment for centuries. They depend on the skin’s amazing ability for self-regeneration and -repair. They address skin concerns as varied as acne, dark spots, sallow discoloration, fine lines, coarse wrinkles, and texture.

Chemical peels range from superficial to medium to deep.

A superficial peel affects only the top layer of the skin and is characterized by flaking or peeling of the skin. These superficial peels are helpful for light exfoliation, acne and pigment in the most superficial part of the skin.

A medium peel goes deeper into the skin than a superficial peel. When peeling experts say “medium,” they mean that the peel will result in wounding of the entire top layer of the skin (the epidermis), extending to the second layer of the skin (papillary dermis). The skin responds to the wound by creating collagen. This is why medium-depth peels help turn back the clock by minimizing sun damage, fine lines, deeper wrinkles, uneven skin texture, pigmentation concerns (brown spots), enlarged pores, and other signs of aging. Medium peels are particularly helpful for sun-damaged skin. One example of a medium-depth peel is the combination of solid CO2 (dry ice) + TCA 35% chemical peel.

What is a Solid CO2 + TCA 35% chemical peel?

The Solid CO2 + TCA 35% chemical peel is a two-step treatment. The first step is freezing the skin with solid CO2. This breaks down the epidermal barrier, allowing the TCA to penetrate more evenly into the papillary dermis in the second step. After applying dry ice, TCA 35% is applied to the skin in layers until the skin has a ‘white frost.’ The more solid the frost, the deeper the penetration. The frost stage typically lasts about 15 min.

What to Expect Post Chemical Peel

After undergoing a CO2 + TCA35% medium-depth chemical peel, the skin changes are quite predictable.
By day three, the epidermis has died, and the underlying dermis has started the wound-healing process. This is characterized by redness, inflammation, and mild swelling.

On day 7, the epidermis has replaced itself with fresh new skin. In the meantime, the old skin sloughs away. The slough starts around areas with more movement, such as around the mouth, gradually spreading outwards. This usually lasts for about a week.

By day 10, the skin is fully healed, allowing for the resumption of regular skincare routines and the use of products like tretinoin, as the skin is no longer sensitive.

At 30 days, new collagen is apparent, and collagen production continues over subsequent weeks and months.

At 90 days, there is an organized band of new collagen in the papillary dermis. The thickness of this band correlates with the strength and depth of the peel.

Who is a Good Candidate?

The ideal candidate has significant sun damage and a fair- to medium-skin tone. The depth of the injury can cause pigmentary issues in darker skin types. The ideal candidate also must have proper expectations, the ability to have downtime, and the ability to follow post-treatment instructions, such as refraining from picking at the skin and following strict sun protection.

Best Practice for This Peel

It is important to remember that medium-depth chemical peel is a controlled injury to the skin and should be performed by someone who has a deep understanding of the skin and the different depths of chemical peels, such as a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon. If you are interested in experiencing the amazing results of this chemical peel for yourself, schedule your consultation with Dr. Chiang at Integrated Aesthetics today.

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